Vertical Multiband HF or Dipole: What works better?

Discussion in 'Antennas, Feedlines, Towers & Rotors' started by KC0IAZ, Apr 14, 2011.

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  1. KC0IAZ

    KC0IAZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Hi all,
    I moved from Kansas to Cripple Creek, CO last fall, and am setteled in enough now to start researching what type of antenna(s) to use. As I only have been a General for a farily short time, I don't have a lot of experience with HF antennas, except for a 40/80 meter trap dipole that I had that worked well. For now, I want to work mainly 40 meters and 10 meters. I am a little limited on space, (but can fit in a 40 meter dipole), budget, and I want a broadband antenna that I can use with no tuner, (for now), if possible.
    Does a multiband vertical, like the Hustler 4-BTV perform well overall? Or should I go with a 40 meter dipole, and a 10 meter vertical? Max height to the antenna feedpoints will be around 30 feet.
    Also, is a 5/8 wave vertical groundplane as good / better than a dipole on 10 meters?
    Thanks and 73's Todd.
  2. KA4DPO

    KA4DPO Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    The 4BTV or the 5BTV will work very well as long as you have a sufficient number of radials. I would go with the 5BTV just because you might want to operate 80 some day but either one would be fine. I personally prefer the Butternut antennas but Hustler antennas are fine and there are thousands of them in service.

    Takeoff angle will be lower with a vertical making it a good DX antenna. A 40 meter dipole at 60 feet will also be a low angle radiator and you don't need a ground. If you only care about fourty and ten meters and have the room and supports, then a 40 m dipole and 10 m ground plane would be acceptable. If you want to work 15 and 20 once in a while then go with the vertical.

    If you just want to work all bands from a single dipole then just feed it with ladder line but you will need a tuner. You can get a tuner for a lot less money than a brand new 4 or 5BTV antenna by the way.
  3. N0IP

    N0IP Ham Member QRZ Page

    I've used a vertical, quad, and dipole antennas over the years. At my new QTH, I've decided to go with a New Carolina Windom for reasons that I explain here:

    If you decide to make or buy one of these, let me know. We can compare notes.


    Todd, NI├śL
  4. K0HWY

    K0HWY Ham Member QRZ Page

    Dollar for dollar, I'd recommend an all band doublet. As was mentioned, you will need to utilize and antenna tuner but you can get something like the MFJ-949E for around $150. Ladder line is relatively cheap. Everything else you need can be bought at home depot. Including the tuner, you should be able to come out in the neighborhood of $200.

    Concerning the ground plane on 10m, it really depends on what you're hoping to do. I use a Solarcon Imax 2000 for most 10m operation. The tuning rings do allow it to be tuned for an acceptable SWR for part of the band but if you plan to get up around 29 and above, you'll need a tuner or you'll have to cut a little off the antenna. I'm not a big fan of cutting fiberglass antennas, so I decided to go with the tuner.
  5. W5DXP

    W5DXP Ham Member QRZ Page

    Here's how to tune an all band doublet without a conventional tuner.
  6. 2E0OZI

    2E0OZI Ham Member QRZ Page

    Cripple Creek? :) Yes I do play the banjo.
  7. NA0AA

    NA0AA Ham Member QRZ Page

    Limited space? You must be right down town CC.

    I use both types, and to my surprise, even though my 20 meter dipole is low to the ground and my 40 not much better, that the dipoles are almost always giving me higher s meter readings than my 1/4 wave ground mounted verticals [home brew single band full size verticals with radials] on the same bands. However, I'm first to admit that my 'radials' for the verticals are pretty minimal due to MY space limitations.

    I hope next summer to be able to test some more antenna configurations.

    How about a horizontal loop?

    I'm a big fan of "All of the Above" - never had too many antennas.

    PS, My Elmer swears by the Solarcon's for 10 meters.
  8. EI4GMB

    EI4GMB Ham Member QRZ Page

    Hi Todd,

    A G5RV Jr.(51ft)(10m,20m &40m) might also be a good idea. This is a cheap and effective limited space antenna that can be matched on 10m,20m & 40m using an internal tuner. Hope this helps ;)

    Best Regards

    Fred EI4GMB
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2011
  9. N6YG

    N6YG Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'll second the vote for the Hustler vertical. I have both a Hustler 6BTV and an all band doublet at 65 feet. The hustler is almost always better then the doublet and On 40 meters the Hustler literally whomps the doublet hands down. every once in a while on 20 the doublet might be a tiny bit better but not really enough to worry about. Of course I have a fairly good radial system under the Hustler. To put it simply with a good radial system the hustler is better then the doublet and without, its worse.

    With no radials the hustler was a big dummy load and the Doublet was far superior. At about 30 radials the vertical matched the doublet and at 60 it surpassed it. To be honest I couldn't tell a difference between 60 and 100 radials which leads me to believe 60 radials was the point of diminishing returns.
  10. N1CZZ

    N1CZZ XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    What is the length of your radials.
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